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Tumble Dryer - Condenser or Vented

(37 Posts)
TwoToTango Fri 15-Sep-06 17:13:27

is there much difference in performance. I am looking to buy a tumble dryer, I remember someone telling me a condenser one was best but I can't remember why. These seem a lot more expensive - any tips or recommendations would be appreciated.

Dior Fri 15-Sep-06 17:15:01

Message withdrawn

marthamoo Fri 15-Sep-06 17:24:07

I've changed my mind on this one. We have a condenser as, in our last house, we couldn't have it anywhere where it could be vented. In this house there is a vent - but the condenser's still going so we don't need it. I've read threads on MN before where people have said condensers take longer to dry clothes and I always thought "yeah, a few minutes more, so what?" but on holiday this year we stayed in a house with a vented dryer. No exaggeration - it dried in a fraction of the time of my condenser - a full load in mine takes about 100-120 minutes, the vented one took about 60-70. I am a complete convert and am trying to convince dh that, even though the dryer still works, we should cut our losses and get a new, vented one - especially as our electricity bills are astronomical.

Bit of an epic answer to a simple qustion, that

TwoToTango Fri 15-Sep-06 17:37:32

marthamoo - thats really helpeful. I think I will go for a vented - I would prefer a hole in the wall than giant electric bills!!

Piffle Fri 15-Sep-06 17:38:41

do not buy a condenser unless you really like ironing deep creases.

Surfermum Fri 15-Sep-06 17:40:20

My condenser dries a load in 60-70 mins! It's great. If you don't have anywhere to put a vent then a condenser one is much better than having the condensation. It's been a long time since I had a vented once so can't really compare on performance but I'm very happy with mine.

crunchie Fri 15-Sep-06 17:40:26

If you can have a vented then I would go for that, we can't so I love our condenser as it is better than nothing

TwoToTango Fri 15-Sep-06 18:17:03

Thanks for all your points of view - its really interesting, it just shows you that the most expensive may not always be the best.

egypt Fri 15-Sep-06 18:31:51

we have a condenser and it takes ages to dry. when it broke down (for the 2nd time) my dh's mate came to look at it (who mends industrial dryers) and told us to buy a vented one next time, saying that condensers took longer to dry clothes and used more energy, hence less cost effective. i hated having to have the hose out of the window but next time will def get a vented one and convince dh its worth cutting a hole in the wall!

my neighbour has a vented one btw, and when i used it during the time ours was broken it had dried all dh's shirts and underwear in 30 mins compared to at least an hour in ours!!! could not believe it!

Gem13 Fri 15-Sep-06 18:37:41

We've had both and the vented is sooo much better than the condenser. Although, to be fair it was a condenser as it was a washer/dryer.

smoggie Fri 15-Sep-06 19:10:14

I would def go for a vented one if you can. I had a condensor for 2 years and it took ages to get stuff dried, I often had to put it on twice to get the stuff dry. Since having our kitchen done I've got an AEG lavatherm vented one and I am still amazed by how little time it takes to dry stuff. It also has an enormous drum so you can fir loads in and it's got lots of room tomove atround which I think helps in getting it dry quicker. I can take stuff straight from the washer and it's dry within 20 mins (30 max). My eco-warrier alter ego cringes at the total waste of energy I've used with the last one.

Dior Sun 17-Sep-06 12:32:20

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hermykne Sun 17-Sep-06 12:36:44

vented as it was cheaper but v efficient

do connect it to the door or wall for venting correctly
and as my dh did, as its in our utility, suggested by my dad, he drilled holes in the door at an angles so there is always good circulation in the utility, esp in the colder months when it will be on longer.

bran Sun 17-Sep-06 12:37:11

I think condensers are more damaging to clothes, we have a condenser in our current home (had a vented in our last home) and after a few goes I just stopped using it and now I hang things on an airer to dry. A condenser works by heating the clothes up so that the water steams off and is then collected by a condenser, whereas a vented one blows warm air over the clothes so the clothes themselves don't have to get as hot.

oxocube Sun 17-Sep-06 12:47:54

Just bought a new Zanussi condenser dryer last month and I love it. Don't agree re creases - I thought that was just when you put too big a load in

RedTartanLass Sun 17-Sep-06 14:11:53

Had a condenser which I thought I hated, so when it broke down last year, we replaced it with a vented. Then I realised I preffered the condenser, so when we moved house we have bought a condenser. Love it, love it, love it!!! The clothes seem to be much fluffier and I don’t notice it taking much longer.

I don’t notice any difference between the condenser or vented in the creasing, I haven’t ironed in about 10 years so they must work!!! I’ve also had one of those washer dryer combinations as well and I hated that with a vengeance!!!

TwoToTango Sun 17-Sep-06 14:55:36

wow, this is all very interesting. i've never had a tumble dryer so it will seem odd not to have to iron everything!

oxocube Sun 17-Sep-06 19:18:24

The ironing thing is great twototango. Obviously shirts and stuff still need to be done, but I find lots of the kids' clothes are fine without

Waswondering Sun 17-Sep-06 19:23:11

My condenser also takes for ever to dry things - I get hot damp washing! Would prefer vented but would involve drilling a hole in the roof, which may not be the most sensible option!!!

Horus Sun 17-Sep-06 19:25:15

its all to do with whether or not you have a hole in the wall, or can make one
if you cant, then you cant have venteed

SoupDragon Sun 17-Sep-06 19:29:28

Waswondering, have you cleaned the condenser unit? I thought mine was drying badly, then my mum asked if I'd cleaned the condenser... er, not since we got it 3 years ago, no

oxocube Sun 17-Sep-06 19:58:03

I clean the condenser unit thing about once a month - we have 2 cats and a dog so lots of animal hair around which clogs up machine. Makes a huge difference

hub2dee Sun 17-Sep-06 20:08:33

I hadn't heard of a significant difference in energy efficiency between vented and condensed tumble dryers. At the end of the day they all have a drum with a heating element and a certain degree of moisture must be removed from the clothes. Whether the vapour is condensed or vented away surely can't make such a big difference between the two types of machine ? tbh I think the brand of machine is probably a more significant indicator of how two machines will perform as the cheaper brands (I guess) use less costly components, and presumably are less efficient IYSWIM.

I found this:

"The calculation used to assign the EU energy label class gives an ‘allowance’ to condenser models of approximately 0.05 kWh per kg for a C rated model. So under test conditions, the typical C rated condenser model that takes a 6kg load will consume 0.4 kWh per load more than the similar vented model. However, if a tumble dryer is installed in a location which is not similar to the test conditions, an unheated garage or utility room for example, the energy consumption of a vented dryer may increase significantly compared to the condenser dryer because it uses energy to heat the cold air it draws from the room. The difference in consumption under test conditions should not be therefore used to discriminate between condenser and vented tumble dryers unless there is evidence for in-use consumption that demonstrates one type is significantly better than the other.


There is no reason to discriminate between condenser and vented models on the basis of declared energy consumption because there is no in-use evidence that one performs better than the other in typical household use." Source .

I love the fact that our condensor needs no vent outlet, and further, the best bit is that it pumps the condensate out to the same drain the washing machine uses rather than having to be emptied every few washes.

AutumnLeavesAreFalling Sun 17-Sep-06 20:28:39

Vented. I had one that was condenser and all I kept getting was damp, smelly washing. (the machine was brand new too). Very disappointed with it. Always caught a whiff of that sort of 'stale smell' - yuck!
No probs since replaced with vented.

aitch71 Sun 17-Sep-06 20:34:00

bless you, hub. i was really panicking as i love my siemens condenser dryer... i think it's great.
my next question is - where is the condenser to be cleaned? what is it? (ours is only new, so hopefully it hasn't damaged it yet.)

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